Best shows from PMFW FW17 Day 3: Sacai, Dior Homme, Hermès and Ami Paris
A line-up of top menswear shows. An offering of super covetable looks. Check in with Norman Tan as he reports live from Paris men's fashion week with an on-the-go audio review of his favourite shows.
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SACAI: COLLAGE AND CUT UPS
Designer: Chitose Abe
Synopsis: All about protecting the neck with the collars of coats and jackets flipped up to reveal this knit appliqué (also on the extended tab closure that fastens the garments at the neck) in various colours including silver and gold. The soundtrack was an Englishmen talking about cutting and mixing things up (but in the context of audio tracks — not dissimilar to this audio review you are listening to right now), which was very appropriate, since the collection was a collage of various textures and materials such as red digital camo print, military cotton twill, and frayed wool sweaters.
DIOR HOMME: HARDCORE, HARDIOR
Designer: Kris Van Assche
Synopsis: Held in one of the salons within the Grand Palais, the seating arranged like a coliseum with black triangular flags strewn across the runway, Van Assche sent out a sartorial collection skewed for the club kids. With Depeche Mode pumping from the stereo speakers, the floorboards plastered with 'HarDior' — a portmanteau of 'hardcore' and 'Dior' — it was an update of the Belgium designer's codes: Contrast (but frayed and dangling) top-stitching on svelte suiting; large safety pins piercing thin blazer lapels; and ensembles routinely anchored by sneakers punched up with strap buckles. New additions came by way of a circular visor (embroidered with 'HARDIOR') long fur gilets (or you might call them sleeveless coats, whatever takes your fancy) tinted with absinthe green and jail-bird orange (there's that hue again!). But my favourite exits were the last, including that anorak-slash-cape emblazoned with the print of huddling/crushed/partying boys that was also found on the show invitation.
HERMÈS: COVETABLE, COOL, CASHMERE
Designer: Véronique Nichanian
Synopsis: It's true what they say: God is in the details. When one attends an Hermès menswear show — a maison that proudly prioritises craft over fashion — one expects exceptional fabrications, cut and styled with a contemporary vision, and deft attention to detail. And for fall/winter 2017, Nichanian not only delivered on that expectation, she exceeded it. In spades. A glance through the show notes reveals a dedication to textile innovation: Technical wool cover coat with leather detail, extra-fine cashmere with saddle topstitching detail, cashmere and suede goatskin patchwork, raglan cashmere with ribbon leather... cashmere, cashmere, cashmere. And not just any sort will do. A recent chat with Nichanian in Tokyo late last year revealed that only the best will do: "You can say, 'I have a cashmere jacket.' But the material itself can be just forty euros a metre but the ones that I use are cashmere that would cost something around 180 euros a metre." But beyond the sumptuous building blocks, are looks and ensembles that made me salivate: That fur cable-knit sweater in green; that black and white belted duster coat with macro houndstooth check; that closing velvet suit in burgundy; and, a dream come true, that merlot Victoria bag in Togo calfskin.
AMI PARIS: SIGN OF THE TIMES
Designer: Alexandre Mattiussi
Synopsis: You know you've watched a good fashion show when you scroll back through the notes in your iPhone and see 'need', 'must buy', and 'LOVE' punched out next to various looks. Which, when it comes down to it, is the whole point of fashion — it's meant to elicit desire. Staged under neon lights (fashioned into iconic brands and symbols, including Harley Davidson and a green cross that denotes a pharmacy here in Paris) Mattiussi showed half-tucked striped shirts under V-neck sweaters and trench coats (which was very Louis Vuitton FW17), truncated and thin collar blousons (reminiscent of Salvatore Ferragamo in Milan) and red Buffalo plaid with cuffed blue jeans (à la Dries Van Noten from earlier in the week). Which is not to say that Mattiussi copied those designers (or vice versa) but rather, that he was in good company. His insouciant styling and covetable looks are clearly hitting the mark; capturing the menswear zeitgeist right on the bulls-eye.
SEE YOU IN TOMORROW:
Check back tomorrow as Norman Tan continues his on-the-go live reporting from Paris men's fashion week fall/winter 2017 season.
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